65 And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart. And the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.
8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God. And Noah begat three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
The heroes of yore (heroes are necessarily good?) turn out to be powerful, but not good.
“Evil” seems to be more than has been described. It is said to be “great”. Note can be taken that a simple vocal shift can turn this from an adjective to a verb meaning “multiply.” Like heroes, multiplication is presumed as good for it is what was commanded.
Multiplication of vain imagining, of going it alone, of building cities, and mixing up what is G*D’s and what is ’adam’s seem to have no end. They become addictions, capturing an individual’s life force—captured at least through nurture, if not actual genetic change, and passed as a trait through the generations.
A heart set on itself has no room for another or an empathetic response to and interaction with them. A heart devising aggrandizement for itself is directly connected with the description of G*D’s pained heart—grieving a loss of partnership.
This grief is a response to a broken heart over the enlarged and weakened heart of humanity (both the powerful and the powerless) that brings us to a regret so large it will ultimately have to be regretted. [For extra credit: Compare and contrast “regretted” and “repented”.]
Made in the throes of regret, a decision to wipe out all of creation cannot be sustained. Even though it is in a direct line of the threat of death for tasting of good and not-good, it is now going to be enforced in a way similar to subsequent decisions made by kings who can’t take back a pronouncement for fear of losing face—a second plan attempts to mitigate the effect of a first rash decision. [For extra credit: Why is this situation regretted or repented, and changed, but not the prior one of banning ’adam and Eve* from Eden?]
An innocent yes-man was noted by G*D—Noah. Noah is as nondescript as was ’adam. This is fitting as Noah would be the first of ’adam’s line who would have been born after ’adam died. And we are back to a sense-less, pinball playing, Tommy character.
This section concludes with a mini-genealogy that Noah begat Shem, Ham, and Japheth some 500 years later. G*D’s pained heart fed on regret for at least these 500+ years after ’adam’s death, before acting on it. (Note to the wise: beware accumulated regret, it becomes explosive.)